Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, a standalone sequel to the 1995 Robin Williams film, isn’t in theaters until the end of December. The first reactions from critics have arrived though, thanks to the movie being screened for press.
While it may come as a surprise, the reviews thus far are very positive. The new Jumanji may not be a contender at the Academy Awards, but the word being used quite often is “fun.” As GameSpot’s own Mike Rougeau says, “It’s light on nostalgia (besides a handful of Easter eggs), but a lot of fun. The body swap stuff is SO good. Could watch Jack Black play a teenage girl stuck in Jack Black’s body, or [The Rock] newly discover his muscles, forever.”
Saw #Jumanji! It’s light on nostalgia (besides a handful of Easter eggs), but a lot of fun. The body swap stuff is SO good. Could watch Jack Black play a teenage girl stuck in Jack Black’s body, or @TheRock newly discover his muscles, forever. #WelcomeToTheJungle pic.twitter.com/yRIoQsWASV
— Mike Rougeau (@RogueCheddar) November 27, 2017
Fandango’s Erik Davis agrees, writing, “It’s super entertaining & very funny w/ terrific cast chemistry.” The cast, consisting of Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black, and Karen Gillan, are getting great reviews for the work in their film thus far–especially Black as a teenage girl stuck in the body of a middle-aged man.
I can now say that the biggest surprise of the holiday season is #Jumanji. It’s super entertaining & very funny w/ terrific cast chemistry (especially b/t @TheRock & @KevinHart4real). Video game fans will dig it even more. See it w/ the whole family pic.twitter.com/e6FOPwjsB5
— ErikDavis (@ErikDavis) November 27, 2017
“[The Rock], [Karen GIllan], [Kevin Hart], and [Jack Black] are chemistry gold,” Collider Video’s John Rocha says. Adds Film Journal’s Rebecca Pahle, “Jack Black’s performance is perfection personified and deserves 12 Oscars.” While you shouldn’t hold your breathe waiting for the Academy to recognize Black’s work in the film, it’s reassuring to hear how well the characters all work together.
Saw @jumanjimovie last night and it is A LOT of fun! @TheRock @karengillan @KevinHart4real and #JackBlack are chemistry gold. The body swapping stuff totally works, the action scenes are well done and it’s got a great BIG heart at the center of it. Highly recommend it. #Jumanji pic.twitter.com/OmXkc1I24o
— John Steven Rocha (@TheRochaSays) November 27, 2017
Now that the social embargo for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is up, I will say that Jack Black’s performance is perfection personified and deserves 12 Oscars. pic.twitter.com/4wu3Q4wYIB
— Rebecca Pahle (@RebeccaPahle) November 27, 2017
It also sounds like the exact kind of movie you might need during the upcoming holiday season. “It’s the kind of family-friendly outing that should help settle a lot of debates this holiday season,” IndieWire’s Kate Erbland says. As for how it continues the story set up by the first Jumanji, that remains a mystery. However, Erbland continues, “I kinda love how they attempt to make it a true sequel to the original with some wonky engineering.”
Hey, about that new #Jumanji: It’s fun! It’s the kind of family-friendly outing that should help settle a lot of debates this holiday season. Jack Black is very, very funny, and I kinda love how they attempt to make it a true sequel to the original with some wonky engineering.
— Kate Erbland (@katerbland) November 27, 2017
In the end, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is shaping up to be much better than some might have expected it to be. Naturally, you’ll have to judge for yourself whether it’s any good–or even worth your time. The new Jumanji is in theaters on December 20. You can check out more critic tweets below.
Was expecting the worst but have to admit the new #JUMANJI movie is a lot of fun. I’d even say it is one of the best “video game movies” ever made, maybe under only King of Kong, Scott Pilgrim, Edge of Tomorrow & Wreck It Ralph (none of which are adaptations).
— Peter Sciretta (@slashfilm) November 27, 2017
There’s a lot of laughs and heart in #Jumanji. Cast has some pretty special chemistry and the game angle totally works. Props to @TheRock @KevinHart4real @karengillan and Jack Black for playing kids so well!
— Rob Keyes (@rob_keyes) November 27, 2017
The new #Jumanji is a ton of fun and succeeds by not trying to make a film even remotely similar to the original. It’s vindicated of comparisons, while also giving a nice nod or two to Robin Williams. #WelcomeToTheJunket pic.twitter.com/EsPGoTAM0Z
— Corey Chichizola (@corey081590) November 27, 2017
#Jumanji was a ton of fun. Great nods to the original. Jack Black steals it. @TheRock and @KevinHart4real need to keep working together.
And YO I love @karengillan!
— Brandon Davis (@BrandonDavisBD) November 27, 2017